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Cost of Living Comparison in Australia and the UK and Who Has it Better

Thinking about relocating to Australia? Have you compared the cost of living in Australia and the UK?

Australia is a favoured relocation destination for Brits. After all, there are many ties between the UK and Australia, culturally, socially, on the sporting pitch and even family ones. These links were forged through a turbulent history, shared language and deep running alliances.

Also, there are a few places where Brits can go and lead a normal life without having to go into the bother of learning the language.

London is considered the biggest Aussie city outside of Australia and a growing number of British families are moving over Down Under to get better weather and lifestyle.

Are we considering a move to Australia?

Probably not – for us it is too far away from everything we know (we are profoundly European, I’m afraid). Still, three families on our little road have relocated to Australia in the last fifteen years or so.

With that in mind, I decided to investigate which country has the better cost of living by comparing the cost of living in Australia and the UK.

(I’m grateful to the cost of living comparison site Numbeo which currently has the largest, and most regularly maintained user-contributed database of costs of living in countries and cities around the world.)

Cost of living comparison Australia vs UK: owning and renting a home

cost of living comparison

Photo by JJ Jordan on Unsplash

One big advantage the UK has over Australia is that interest rates have remained low for a long time now.

Hence, mortgage payments in Australia are higher than in the UK, primarily because of the higher interest rates, and owning a house will ultimately cost you more.

Furthermore, property prices in Australia have sky-rocketed during the last 25 years in smaller cities such as Perth, Brisbane and Adelaide. It has created a housing affordability crisis which has not been helped by wealthy foreigners buying property in these cities and pushing housing prices through the roof.

While property prices in Manchester or Liverpool have also increased since the beginning of the Global Financial Crisis in 2009, this increase is not as high (standing at 68% over ten years).

Table 1: Price comparison of buying or renting a property in Australia and the UK
Rent per month (in GBP)

Australia

UK

One-bedroom apartment (city centre)

£937.01

£718.62

One-bedroom apartment (outside centre)

£720.40

£576.05

Buy apartment (price per square meter)
Apartment in the city centre

£4,426.81

£4,255.46

Apartment outside the city centre

£3,247.72

£2,914.24

 

Verdict: when it comes to property, UK rules

Overall, the cost of renting and buying a property is lower in the UK than in Australia. (Here is how to keep the costs of buying lower in the UK.)

Still, there are great local differences. For instance, the costs of renting and buying property in London are nearly 20% higher than in Sydney.

Cost of living comparison Australia vs UK: groceries and eating out

Australia has a virtual duopoly when it comes to Supermarkets. Coles and Woolworths account for over 80% of all supermarkets in Australia, which is not healthy in terms of competition.

Add in the fact that Australia needs to import foodstuff from overseas and you should expect to pay a lot more for your day to day grocery down under (see Table 2 for comparison of prices of key foodstuff).

Compare this to the UK, a member of the European Union and close to many countries that produce plenty of food eaten in season. Food in the UK is 26% cheaper than food in Australia.

Table 2: Price comparison of groceries and eating out in Australia and the UK
Groceries (main foods)

Australia

UK

Milk

£0.84

£0.91

Loaf of Bread

£1.48

£0.99

Rice

£1.47

£0.90

Eggs

£2.41

£1.86

Local cheese

£5.16

£5.38

Beef

£8.46

£7.42

Tomatoes

£2.84

£1.71

Potatoes

£1.81

£1.13

Eating out
Meal inexpensive restaurant

£11.12

£12.00

Meal for 2, mid-range restaurant

£44.50

£45.00

 

Verdict: Food is cheaper in the UK

Generally, food is cheaper in the UK. Only the price of milk and local cheeses is lower in Australia – all else is more expensive.

(Here is how to keep food costs low and stop wasting food.)

Eating out appears to be slightly cheaper in Australia.

(Please, remember that there are large variations in prices depending on the region and city where you are.

Cost of living comparison Australia vs UK: motoring

cost of living comparison

Photo by Tabea Damm on Unsplash

Where motoring in concerned the Aussies have it good.

Brits, on the other hand, have some of the highest petrol prices in the world. At an average cost of £0.80 in Australia the Aussies pay almost £0.50 per litre less on petrol than their British mates.

Buying a car is also approximately 35% cheaper in Australia. (Of course, this may vary by a make of car.)

Add to that the high cost of car insurance in the UK (especially car insurance for young drivers) and you can see why this one goes to the Aussies.

Verdict: motoring is much cheaper in Australia

Motoring, including buying a car, petrol and insurance, is much cheaper in Australia.

Cost of living comparison Australia vs UK: commuting

With a combination of cheaper petrol and cheaper public transport, you’d expect the Aussies to win this one hand down.

Things, however, are not so clear cut here. While a single ticket for the metro is cheaper in Australia, a monthly pass is cheaper in the UK (nearly 30% cheaper).

On the other hand, taxis are much cheaper in Australia.

Verdict: a tie between Australia and the UK

Commuting will have to be a tie.

Here is the winning point: comparison of salaries in Australia and the UK

cost of living comparison

Salaries are on average 28% higher in Australia than they are in the UK.

It means that much of the advantages that cheaper housing and food offer the Brits are wiped out by the lower wages and the lower purchasing power.

Final score

This cost of living comparison between Australia and the UK is based on average and therefore has some limitations.

Still, we can confidently say that the Aussies have it better.

Forget the sun, colour and surfing. Forget the ocean, the swimming and the cool beaches.

While consumer prices (overall) are 12% lower in the UK, the purchasing power is 16% lower (because of lower pay).

Life is overall better in Australia, friends. It will be even more obvious after Brexit when the food prices in the UK will shoot up.

Is it time to check the conditions for immigrating to Australia?

photo credit: texaus1 via photopin cc

Editor’s note: This post was first published in 2014 and now I republish an updated and re-written version. To update the post, I researched the prices again and checked the information in the comments.

46 thoughts on “Cost of Living Comparison in Australia and the UK and Who Has it Better”

  1. I have no idea how things are in the UK, but I’ve lived in Australia and Canada. When I moved to Canada, I was shocked by how much cheaper everything was! I spent my first month in the mall grabbing things like they were free. 😉

    Reply
    • This is so ridiculously flawed. Nowhere in London can you get a room that cheap and nowhere in Melbourne costs that much unless you’re talking Faaaaaaaaaaancy. Stupidly geared towards making London sound affordable and melbourne not… christ, do any research or live both places and you’ll see how stupid this page is.

      Reply
  2. One big issue with Australia is also the cost of transportation and flight to the rest of the world. If you are used to have business or vacation in Africa, America or Europe, living in Australia is extremelly expensive.
    Thank you for posting,
    Robert

    Reply
    • @Robert: This is correct; I have a colleague who worked in Australia for several years and he was saying that being far from everywhere else is not a very good feeling. Professionally or personally. At the same time, I can get used to the beach and the sports.

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      • So I have been reading through these comments and of them are a serious joke. $1.75 dollars Australian a litre for fuel. Mate, where did you get your fuel? Some dogey back yard fuel stop in where you where getting drugs with your petrol? We didn’t even pay that much at the Barkley road house in June and Australians who travel frequently across the outback country know how expensive that place is.

        I don’t even live in the city nor does my town have a large supermarket, we only have a spar and that place is Dodgy at best. (Other Spars in other towns are much nicer then ours lol) so we travel to the next town to go to the bigger supermarket. (Also for our own health, I have found I have bout out of date or expired items from the local shop more then once and head office has actually been investigating before they position someone but that’s another story). But, the best thing about going to the larger supermarkets. I have national prices. I pay $1 a litre for milk, bread starts at $1 and my fruit and veg is all Australian grown unless otherwise signed. I know that the meat I buy is Australian so the quality is amazing, unless I buy fish that states it’s been imported.

        I leave for England in under a fortnight and think I might actually do a proper comparison for people to look at so they can make correctly informed choice,not try and base it off very misleading information. (I’m an Australian, I travel across this country many many times a year and can safely say that Perth is not a small city in Australia, perhaps looks at Hobart, which is a small capital city, and prices that have been listed by the author are not at all accurate to all of australia or even to Perth)

        Some additional comments, today at Coles, I paid $2 for 500grams (two punetts) of cherry tomato’s and I walked the whole 500m in a hat, sunscreen and long sleeve shirt to the beach where there was absolutely no rubbish, I didn’t see any signs of the water being toxic (I did see pretty fish swimming in a little reef that was visible during the low tide). Then I walked home to my four bedroom modern open planned house, with two bathrooms, a play room, a media room and a completely covered back entertaining area surrounded on two sides by rainforest that I only pay $330 a week to live in I did think to myself how pretty blessed I am to live in paradise

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    • rubbish,I live in the blue mountains,it’s summer now and I have heating on,so go swimming in a toxic sea and get skin cancer,eventually it will get you,

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    • You’re kidding right? What utter rubbish, unless you have a lot of solar panels and a large battery you’re going to be paying high energy prices here in oz.

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    • What do you mean swimming? We live 6yrs in Sydney and swimming is out of question. By the time you enter the water, you become a potential snack! And Australians might not be scared, but the reality is what it is!
      Yes, there are sea water pools. But they are as good as any other pools in UK.
      Finally, with the poor building quality and the single glaze windows, the weather is not that cold at 16oC, but when it is exactly the same inside, then yes, it is indeed very cold!

      Reply
  3. I have lived in both countries Canada for 3 years and Australia for over 10 years, honestly speaking….Australia is beautiful BUT fairly expensive compared to CA and YES Melbourne is very cold in Winter time, cannot reach Vancouver minus 5 degrees but the wind in Melbourne and Adelaide even in Sydney from June to September is freeziiinnnnnngggggggg!!!
    And the feeling “we are” living in a very far…far…far…far way land which to flight to any place is fairly expensive……
    My vote would be to CA or probably UK is cheaper, as far as I read and asked to some friends.

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  4. What a joke! Australia is dramatically lower in cost of living when compared to the UK. Your housing comparisons are so wrong. You can have a house twice the size in Oz for half the price – what are you comparing here? And in terms of rentals you can get a 3 bedroom house near the city for the same price you can find a crappy 1 bedroom flat in the UK. It’s not even comparable.

    You can’t take a piss in the UK without paying and someone is always trying to charge you for something. Everything costs a fortune in the UK and the wages for professionals are a lot lower.

    As for groceries the quality, variety and freshness of fruit and vegetables is miles ahead and you are wrong on pricing – the UK is much more expensive.

    Train travel is a joke in the UK too – Train from High Wycombe to London Daypass at around 25 quid with the comparable distances on train in Australia for about a fiver.

    The writer needs to do some proper research here because you couldn’t be further from the truth.

    Reply
    • Yes I do agree with you we lived in London for a 13 years and is true rent cost very high travel cards is cost a lot and everything is very compressed .
      and we live now in Sydney for a year we love the weather for sure.
      UK is expensive to live

      Reply
    • I assume your experience was in and around London. Vastly different from living elsewhere in the country.
      Just returned from 1 month in WA and 2 on the Gold Coast – renting, not luxury hotel. The groceries in both places were similar to South Coast , UK , but still more pricey. House prices in England are NOT house prices in London or anywhere within commuter distance of London.
      House prices in and around Perth were extremely high although they were more reasonable over on the East Coast. (obviously not Sydney but then that would be like comparing prices with London).
      Loved Australia but price-wise, we did find it cheaper in UK. That makes it difficult as all family are Australians and living over there….including only child, so this isn’t biased to UK I promise. I think sometimes lifestyle is mistaken for cost of living and there are different ways of living that can accommodate the kind of price differences we found. That is with the exception of the strangely high prices of property around Perth.

      Reply
    • Dan have you been living in a cupboard for the last 10 years? Been living in oZ for over 5 years, paying $300 (£150) a week for just a room with a toilet! (“studio apartment” they call it), every time I go to the supermarket it’s at least $50 for just a few things – UK is far far cheaper: sandwiches $2 jar of coffee $5. in Oz it’s $13 just for a jar of nescafe (just a few examples). House prices!? Can’t get anything for under $500,000 (£250,000). Uk can buy a place for £80,000 ($160,000). All be it not in London, obviously. But still, any of the other major UK cities are wwwaaayyyyy cheaper than Australia.

      Train service in Oz is terrible, they go about 10mph and you’ll pay upwards of $40 (£20) just to travel from Sydney to Newcastle. No metro/underground systems either

      You’re basing your prices on London mate, but Sydney, Melbourne (are there any other cities worth living in?) are expensive as hell.

      Reply
      • Hi why always compare London to any city I live in liverpool and live in fairly nice house right my the sea I know and the weather wins in oz but I like the seasons here I lived in Sydney for 10years and find UK cheaper slightly but also easy to visit anywhere easier and my job pays more here than in oz and find it easier to make friends in UK buut also back with family which I missed so much got very home sick so far away weather does not make up for that in my opinion.. So UK wins for me.

        Reply
        • Hi,
          How would you compare salaries in both places for similar roles. I’m considering moving to the UK and am totally confused. What about tax rates in both countries.
          Thanks

          Reply
    • Hurrah!!thankyou for that!I’ve just been on a property course in the uk so now deciding whether to invest in property in the uk or Australia or both?any tips?

      Reply
    • I agree with you how the hell does Austraila get the name of being so expensive !!! I am in the uk now and no one can afford a steak , ok W.A cost of living is High but so Are the wages ,we live in N.S.W. The best country in the world ,and I have been to a lot of them xxxxx

      Reply
    • haha who put ten pence in you?
      After living in Perth for the last 3 years I have come to the conclusion that the place is a total rip off!!! still living on the dormant mining boom,yes there are things that are cheaper than the UK like fuel and public transportation but the cost of living as a whole is way overpriced..but I suppose if you lived in London before then you are used to paying extortionate prices….wake up and smell the coffee

      Reply
  5. As an Australian who has been living in the UK for almost three years – two just south of London and since May 2015 in the north east – I would say that the total cost of living is cheaper here than in Australia. Yes, petrol is cheaper in Oz, and insurance, but here the roads are better. Fruit and vegetables are usually grown in the UK, and if you use your local market you get excellent products very cheaply. Try buying 500g of cherry tomatoes for $2 in Australia. Train travel is dearer here but at least you don’t have to wait a whole day for a train to another city. In Perth you have to wait 15 minutes between metro trains – 30 minutes on a Sunday. Here it is every six minutes on a weekday. The NHS means you never need to pay to go to the doctor, and children and aged people get free prescription medicine. Hospitals are free, and while the waiting list may sometimes be long, it’s had some problems that way in Australia, too. Admittedly, things like steak are expensive here, but pork is very good value. Beer is cheap and there is a huge range of different types. Wine is where we really notice the difference. A cheap bottle of not very good wine will set you back $8 – you can get a good bottle for half that in Oz.

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  6. You’ve got to be kidding Valerie. It doesn’t compare.

    I’d be keen to know the roads you are comparing. The motorways can be good at times but in peak hour when you need them most they are shocking as completely congested. And if you want to hit the coast in Summer – plan to spend a good 2 or 3 hours sitting in traffic. Once you get off of the motorways the roads are shocking and always congested. I can wait an hour or more just getting out of the industrial estate I work on and thats a common occurrence. The condition of secondary roads is poor too with massive potholes everywhere.

    And I’ll wait the extra 9 minutes for the next train when I can pay $4 instead of $40. I know people who are paying over 5000 pounds per year to train to work – utterly ridiculous.

    The Fruit and Veg doesn’t compare here for quality either. Australia’s is also mostly grown locally too and has a much greater variety. More than 90 per cent of fresh fruit and vegetables, meat, milk and eggs sold in supermarkets are domestically produced in Australia.

    Your medical comparison doesn’t add up either. Yes, you don’t pay to see the doctor each visit but what’s the use if it takes forever and they constantly push for the cheapest alternative to aid you. I have needed a doctor twice here – both times have included a 2 week wait just to get in and then I was told I can’t have the medication I have used for years at home because they have to give me the cheaper option. The second visit recently for a known knee issue and I am still waiting for someone to call from the department that looks after that side 2 weeks later. Yes I had private health in Aus but within a week I was able to see a GP, surgeon and then have the surgical procedure I required. I’m happy to pay a little if it means things actually get done.

    Its also the little costs that add up here too. There is someone here set up to add cost to every little thing you do. There’s always an extra. You pay a huge amount for a gym and then you have to fork out 60 quid just to park there. Pay a fortune to get into London and you need to go to the loo, you have to pay – it’s never ending. I’m finding it claustrophobic with the add on costs of everything here and I earn a good wage.

    You can live on your cheap beer, wine and cherry tomatoes but with all costs taken into account the costs in Australia are hugely lower. All of these bits and pieces add up to the standard of living and in the quality of food, transport and housing here it just doesn’t compare to the quality available in Australia. If you add the cost and quality of all commodities and services here Australia is much cheaper. The cost of living is the sum of all outlay – not just a few commodities that are found to be less. You must also balance that with the quality of those products and services.

    Reply
    • Dan, I think you are comparing Australia to London, or within commuter distance of it, to prices in Oz. That would be fair if it was Sydney vs London. I have to say though that parking and road congestion is a big issue in many parts of UK.
      Waiting times for hospital appointments could be avoided if you paid privately the way you said you did in Oz, or at least pay for the first consultation with the specialist, that is what takes a lot of the time. You could see consultant privately within few days and then you revert to nhs and he will refer onto next stage – it saves weeks of waiting. If you paid privately in Oz , it isn’t a fair comparison when you could do the same in UK.
      I do agree about public transport costs in UK. The two countries are actually very hard to compare with any accuracy I think. Oz has the amazing climate – well not so much in Victoria, but still very nice. UK as everyone on earth knows, has the most frustrating climate on the planet. London is lovely……but it’s not England.

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    • Agree 200%. Struggled financially for 16 years in the UK (I am an engineer), moved down under just to find same occupation is paying 2.7 times more in Australia. Australian food is cheaper and much tastier. Gas, electricity, public transport and rates are way cheaper and on top of all this – in the UK everybody seems to want a piece of you and your money every waking minute, pressure mounts up. Here life is more relaxed and that’s what really counts. Oh, I should mention that I live in Adelaide CBD here in Australia, and in the UK I lived in a small mining town in Nottinghamshire and worked in the City.

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  7. I cant compare Australia with UK as I never lived in Australia, living in Dubai for 4 yrs. and now in UK for 14 yrs.,Dubai is a wonderful country to live, food is cheap but everything else especially Accommodation, kids school, hospital all are very expensive.
    As I heard from my friends and some family who migrated to Australia, Perth(busselton), got a cousin in Adelaide and another friend in Sydney, they all come up with the same sort of story, cheaper leaving compared to UK, houses are big, fresh food but the main benefit is you get more time with your family and more time with kids, not like the kids in UK who spent majority of there time playing with gadgets and as parents after a long wait in the traffic along with the ridiculous weather we don’t even have enough energy to play with our kids.
    So I would say and we are planning(thinking to be honest)to move to Australia if we can.

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  8. I think the only real way to compare the cost of living between the UK and Australia is with the “how much do I have left over each pay period” method.
    Born and educated in North Sydney with a move to London in 2010, doing the same job with the same pay ($70k Aus & £35k UK) I find that I have on average, £230 ($460) per month more in savings in the UK compared to Australia.
    This is comparing real apples with apples as I lived in North Sydney 2060 and now live in Chelsea.

    If you take a 100-200km drive out of Sydney, head north to the Central Coast or Newcastle, wages drop by about $15k per annum and an average 40 year old 3 bed house on 600 sq/m is about 1/2 million dollars less than Sydney (excluding western Sydney). Go south to Tasmania and you will be lucky to earn over $45k per annum for 40 hours per week, yet a 3 bed house on 600 sq/m can be picked up with a starting price of $90k.

    When I first arrived in the UK in 2010, I lived in Bath for a few months, then Bristol – probably a good equivalent to Newcastle in Australia.
    Again, I would say that I was coming out in front financially living in Bristol UK for a year or so even though I was doing more partying etc. as it was all new and I was younger. I actually ended up buying my first home in Bristol, something I would have found difficult to do in Newcastle Australia without a partner or second income.

    Christmas/New Year 2015/2016 I returned home to Sydney for a 6 week visit, stayed with the parents and was completely overwhelmed by how much Australia had changed for the worst. (Sydney is virtually another Chinese province, population is up by 1.3million in NSW).
    Grocery prices are out of control, even with Aldi on the block and the housing buy/rent prices were triple compared to 2010. My parents modest 1890’s built 3 bed cottage in North Sydney with 2 car parking and harbour glimpses is valued at $5.3m, the average 2 bed semi detached to rent in the area is $1500 per week unfurnished, a 1 person grocery shop is about $160 per week and petrol isn’t cheap if you buy the 95ron which is about $1.75L.

    As much as I love Australia and the outdoor life it provides, the UK for me wins hands down on living a better life financially – oh, and I love the long daylight hours for about 5 months of the year where I can get a game of golf in after work – cant do that in Aus.

    And one final thing – my accountant here in the UK looks after everything for me and provides a graph each year – in Australia, after tax I would keep 71.3% of my salary, in the UK after tax, I keep 82.2%. That sure adds up !.

    Anyway, I have no plans on returning to Australia as quite simply, its been on a roller coaster ride downhill with immigration in overload since 2007 (about the time Rudd became PM) and the cost of living.

    Cheers

    Reply
    • £35k is not that same as $70. You were/are actually being paid more in the UK, based on wage conversion (not exchange rates) £35k is more like $87.5k.

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  9. one pack cheapest cigarette $17 , house rent and much more things very expensive in Australia! Also no job, shut down all industry! Everything coming from China. You can’t imagine to go dentist because extremely expensive!I came 6 years ago from Istanbul and I didn’t like Australia . I’m thinking about go back to Istanbul.Because more cheaper and luxury life than Australia!

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  10. Guys am now planing to move to Australia as we did relocated to Uk . We came from Italy lovely place to raise children and the education is really good, as I realize when my kids started school here in Birmingham they comes home without any assignment from sch. Sometimes I feel really sorry for them as since we came to here every activities for the children are indoor and you need to subscribe and book appointments whiles in Italy every activity is outdoor more time with family and 9months sun shine not like Uk that, you are even lucky enough to have sun shine for 2weeks for the whole of the year.

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  11. The article was written ok but as for the replies you are all comparing apples with oranges. Sydney and Melbourne is not a true representation of Australia and London isn’t a representation of the UK. If you want to compare Sydney to London then ok that makes some sense but what has that got to do with the rest of those countries? I wouldn’t live in London or any of Australia’s cities ever again.

    All I can say is that my occupation pays more in Australia, it is more secure and I get more leave than in the UK doing the same job. I live in a small coastal town in Aus and can afford to raise a family even though we are 5 mins from a beautiful and empty beach have a 10 acre property, 4 bedrooms, a pool, multiple sheds, 2 boats, a caravan, trailers and a shed full of toys. I can go scuba diving, surfing,play golf, fishing, 4wding, camping and caravaning with little to no cost. I get to enjoy the out doors and don’t need to go on holidays to see the sun and beach.

    But that’s because of the location I live in Australia, the occupation I do and the hobbies I enjoy. If I was into the arts, shopping etc then I wouldn’t be living here.

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  12. This article is completely skewed. I’m assuming everything is base on exchange rates and not actually earning/spending power. No where does it state that Australia’s minimum wage is 2.5x higher than the UK. Groceries cost about the same when you factor that in. Electrical goods work out much cheaper than the UK. Mobile phone? How’s about unlimited calls, texts and 3gb of data for the equivalent of £12 a month pay as you go. A generous sized 4 bed new build bungalow an hour or so outside of Perth is equivalent to £180k. The council tax on that would be around £750. Electric is cheaper, petrol is cheaper, rates are cheaper. You see, this article doesn’t show you just how much disposable income you have once you are working on their wages.

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  13. Wages are higher in Aus so the buying power is greater and you don’t need heating for 8 months of the year. Sit on the decking with a $10 bottle of wine and a $10 steak for two. Can’t do that in the Uk. As a Pom now AUs citizen there is no contest. Aus wins for me hands down

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  14. I was born in the UK and have lived here in Melbourne since 1978. I have traveled back to Uk a few times. I have siblings in the UK and I am thinking about moving back to Liverpool to live near one of my sisters. Big decision, not sure what to do. I would get UK pension and also Aus pension because I have worked in both places.I have an adult daughter and son who don’t want to go to the UK. so its very tough for me to decide. I will get a council house in the UK whereas I have no hope here in Melbourne. That’s a key factor for me. house security as I grow older. I also like how close Europe is to the UK. So what to do ???????Would appreciate any suggestions, please?????

    Reply
    • @Patricia: Patricia, thanks for stopping by and sharing. This is a very big decision you are facing and the course of action is very personal. All I can do is to say that the UK is in a considerable level of flux because of the Brexit vote. This may mean that the attraction of the closeness of Europe may not play soon. Once we leave the EU travel to Europe will become more difficult and certainly much more expensive. You also have to be aware that the UK may be facing a very profound economic problem which is a result of a number of influences (leaving the EU and the business that is leaving the UK with it is only one of these). Only now, there is the news that Britain is in much more financial deficit than previously assumed. During hard times social security provisions usually suffer. We fully expect that the NHS won’t exist in 5-10 years and this means very high health care bills. Older people will have it really hard. I’m not sure what will happen to the state pension in the UK and the council houses may be in extremely high demand. Europe itself is not very stable place at the moment. If I were you, I’d stay with my kids and think how to have some house security in Australia. This is just me, though.

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  15. Yes Australia is a bit expensive but cheaper too in contrast to somethings in uk. Its comes with a worldclass lifestyle and healthcare. Salaries are higher than the rest of the world so doesnt that equalize the expenses? Its beautiful ! UK isnt very cheap either.
    Coming to Canada so yea it is quite cheaper compared to uk and oz but it has its own negatives like the freezing weather etc. Every country has its ups n downs. Its always hard to choose 😉

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  16. Been years since this was posted so things have likely changed a little.

    I’ve lived in both countries (renting) and agree with others that most things in the UK have a “base charge” with countless extra little charges.

    Rent – In Aus, you pay your rent and utility bills.
    In the UK, you pay this plus council tax. Likely also some other little ancillary charges from the agent. This can be an extra $300AUD+ per month depending on the property.

    Public toilets in the UK are few and far between, and when you do find one it usually costs to use it. It’s usually only like 20p but still… You’re paying to piss.

    Owning a car – Fuel is more expensive here in the UK as discussed. Also, if your car is over 3 years old you need to have a MOT test (RWC equivalent) every year, on top of your rego.

    Even something as simple as owning a TV needs a licence!!! It’s in the range of ~$300AUD per year. This includes regular tv channels not just the BBC. This is enforced by agents visiting your home to check if there’s a tv plugged in… Yes this is a real thing.

    Railcards- So this sounds like a good idea on paper, a subscription for discounted train tickets. But really you’re just paying an extra fee to bring down already overpriced tickets. You’re paying more to pay less.

    National Trust memberships – This ones not so bad but again, you’re paying an extra fee to pay less overall.

    Travel- This is the greatest thing about the UK. Only problem with this is that airlines aren’t stupid. If you plan on doing a “weekend in the Paris” you quickly realise that everybody else is thinking the same thing. This leads to a £40 RyanAir flight quadrupling to £160. If you fly during weekdays though the prices are amazing, often cheaper than train journeys within the UK itself.

    These additional fees aren’t city specific (though they can vary depending on where you live). So whether it be London or anywhere else in the UK, expect extra charges for everything.

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    • @Scott: Thanks for stopping by, friend. Yes, this is an old post but it was updated couple of months ago (I didn’t want to lose the story that is in the comments from over the years). I like the things you’ve added though – the toilets point is priceless :).

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  17. It’s six and half a dozen, depending on the person, family circumstances, I liked the warm weather, but not hot weather, snakes and spiders plus the lizards scared me, isolation was another thing, hardly seen anyone out of work, spent my husband and me in the house, food I don’t think was as fresh.

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